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What Types of Internet Services Make Adolescents Addicted?

What Types of Internet Services Make Adolescents Addicted?Full Article Title: What Types of Internet Services Make Adolescents Addicted?

Open Access: Yes


Purpose: This study investigated the prevalence and correlates of problematic internet use (PIU) in a large sample of adolescents based on the type of internet service used.

Materials and Methods: The study was conducted from 2008 to 2010, and 223,542 adolescents aged 12 to 18 years participated in the study. The participants responded to a self-report questionnaire including items for demographic factors, internet usage time, most used internet service and mental health. The PIU was assessed with the Internet Addiction Proneness Scale for Youth-Short Form.

Results: The overall prevalence rate of PIU was 5.2%, and the prevalence rates stratified by sex were 7.7% in boys and 3.8% in girls. The distribution of most used internet services was significantly different across sexes. The most commonly used internet services were gaming (58.1%) in boys and blogging (22.1%) and messenger/chatting (20.3%) in girls. The odds ratio for PIU was significantly different according to the most used internet service; using the internet mostly for pornography compared to information searching had the highest odds ratio (4.526-fold higher). Depressive episodes, suicidal ideation, and suicidal attempts were significantly associated with higher odds ratios for PIU (1.725-, 1.747- and 1.361-fold, respectively).

Conclusion: The present study identified clinically important information about PIU in adolescents. The distribution of PIU has different patterns based on sex and specific internet services. Studies of PIU with well-defined methodology and assessment tools for PIU of each specific internet service are needed.


Kim, K. M., Kim, H., Choi, J. W., Kim, S. Y., & Kim, J. W. (2020). What types of internet services make adolescents addicted? correlates of problematic internet use. Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment, 16, 1031–1041.


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